The Attraction of Problems


As I lay in bed surfacing from a fine long sleep, I watched my mind kick in as it started doing what it usually does, helping orientate me to being awake and conscious.

Along comes the dog, I pat it, ‘hello dog’. What time is it, I check the time, ok that’s fine. And then onto pondering what must be done today. Nothing having to be done. Completely free. Any problems I need to address, nope, no problems. Everything is okay, perfect actually. The sun is even shining. I’m going for a walk with a good friend in the afternoon, so all is well. No reason not to be anything other than happy, at peace and contented. Excited even at a whole free day ahead.

Then I noticed I got a little anxious. What, no problems to solve, am I missing something?! ‘Could something go wrong that I’m not noticing here?’ How disconcerting for this mind that loves to get its teeth into solving a problem for me.

And yet there was nothing to feel anxious about. All is just well. So I can just be happy, grateful, chilled and contented.

The mind had other ideas though as that felt disorienting. While I have been working at welcoming happy, relaxed, contented and grateful, it’s not the automatic go to state for the mind, the mind still often prefers problems so it has a job to do. It gives some control and certainty and familiarity.

So it fabricates some idea that maybe something could go wrong in the future. A little wave of anxiety comes. It wants to scan for risks of what could go wrong. It thinks that maybe I don’t get the the next job and there’s no money coming in. Then is suggests this big job could go wrong. Then reminds me that people are waiting for email replies and might be getting angry with me. The anxiety edges up with these thoughts.

Then I call it. It’s bullshit. What is real right now here? Everything is well. All that mind generated stuff about the future…that’s not real. But I’ve let it run a little and the cortisol has started kicking in so have to take some steps. I relax with this disturbance that’s now present, I breath deeply and steadily, I get up and move and start my day. I pat the dog.

I see that we are actually happy, powerful and full of love inside all the time. It’s our natural state. I’m working on allowing that and welcoming that, to stop squishing it down and on savouring those precious moments and enjoying them fully.

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